Show ContentsMurga History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Murga surname is thought to be a habitational name from an extinct place name near Halifax in West Yorkshire. It has been suggested that the place name derived from the medieval personal name Margaret and the Middle English word "royd," meaning "a clearing." [1]

"This surname is derived from a geographical locality. 'of Mergret's royd,' i.e. Margaret's clearing; This surname has ramified strongly in Yorkshire, the county of its birth. Gilbert and Sullivan have immortalized the name, if it needed immortalizing; but it was a strong flight of fancy to place it so far from its true home." [2] Reaney agrees "from a lost Yorkshire place, 'Margaret's clearing'" [3]

Early Origins of the Murga family

The surname Murga was first found in West Yorkshire where one of the first records of the name was Johanus de Morgateroyde who was listed as a constable appointed for the district of Warley in 1371. His name literally meant John of Moor Gate Royde. A few years later in 1379 in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls, John Mergetrode was listed as holding estates in that shire at that time. [2]

"Yorkshire has long been the home of the Murgatroyds. In the 17th century the family owned for a time the Riddlesden estate in Bingley parish; the name is still in Bingley town. James Murgaitroit was a Yorkshire gentleman who subscribed £25 for the defence of his country at the time of the expected Spanish invasion in 1588." [4]

The expression "Heavens to Murgatroyd!" is an expression made famous by Hanna-Barbera cartoon character Snagglepuss and was inspired on the aforementioned Gilbert and Sullivan's "Ruddigore; or, The Witch's Curse," a Victorian comic opera that includes no fewer than seven "Murgatroyd" ghosts, all Baronets to the protagonist (and living) Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd who is disguised as Robin Oakapple, a young farmer. The name has also been lent to other fictional works by Virginia Woolf, Nancy Mitford, Agatha Christie, Clifford B. Hicks and Ann Turner.

Early History of the Murga family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Murga research. Another 134 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1726 and 1739 are included under the topic Early Murga History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Murga Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Murgatroyd, Murgatroid, Mergatroid, Mergatroyd and many more.

Early Notables of the Murga family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Murga Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Murga migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Murga Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Eleuterio De Murga, who landed in Puerto Rico in 1800 [5]
  • Martin De Murga, who landed in Florida in 1838 [5]
  • Jose Murga, who arrived in Puerto Rico in 1860 [5]
  • Isabel Murga, who arrived in Puerto Rico in 1879 [5]
  • Elite Murga, aged 22, who landed in America, in 1892
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Murga Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Anna Murga, aged 21, who immigrated to the United States, in 1905

  1. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges, A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8)
  2. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  4. Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  5. Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8) on Facebook